This is a film for anyone who has had their heart broken, for anyone
who has done the breaking, and for everyone in between. The premise: Clementine (Kate Winslet) and Joel (Jim Carrey) break up, and Clementine has her mind erased of all memories of her former lover. Hurt by this discovery, Joel follows suit and has his brain cleared of Clementine, only to realize in the middle of it that he doesn’t want to give up the memories.
Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet give captivating, absorbing performances, showing us two lonely people, then a happy couple, then a miserable couple, and truly, I think anyone who has been in a relationship will see snippets of themselves in these characters. They are quirky, they are needy, they are emotionally distant, they are vibrant, they are dull. They are so incredibly human that this film can’t help but strike on a visceral level. The characters and the situation (and the idea of what it would be like to do such a thing yourself after a break-up) are so utterly relatable that your heart and your mind connect with them and leave you to wonder if you’re watching a movie of your own experiences.
_Eternal Sunshine_, with all its ins and outs of reality as Joel
struggles with losing his memories, ultimately drives home the idea
that every memory is valuable and that your brain will find some way back to what it has lost. It’s the pain we face that makes us whole, and there’s no escaping it.
See this movie. It’s weird and wonderful and heartbreaking. But I guess that’s what life is about.